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Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,938 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,938
Reviews: 1,769
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 302
Gots: 493 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-03-2005

Maharaja is derived from the sanskrit words mahat, meaning “great”, and rajan, meaning “king”. Much like its namesake, this imperial IPA is regal, intense and mighty. With hops and malts as his servants, he rules both with a heavy hand. The Maharaja flaunts his authority over a deranged amount of hops: tangy, vibrant and pungent along with an insane amount of malted barley – fashioning a dark amber hue and exquisite malt essence. Welcome to his kingdom!

The Maharaja is the second installment in our Dictator Series.

102 IBUs

ABV varies slightly batch to batch.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,938 | Reviews: 1,769 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AgentMunky
4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a BrewDog cervoise glass. Batch #14. Bottled June 2011.

A: A finger of creamy head with good retention. The beer is clear and coppery with hints of pink.

S: I smelled it the second it hit the glass and can still smell it from three feet away. Damn. Grapefruit juice, dry hops, a bit of pine, and maybe some sweeter fruit. Perfect IPA scent.

T: Hm. Fruity for sure. Hops aren't as bitter as anticipated. I take that back, the aftertaste is plenty dry and very enjoyable. The maintaste is almost...tangy. The hops there are earthy and vegetal, the feel is firm and chewy, and there is plenty of fruit (tart mango, underripe banana, and, of course, ruby grapefruit. Alcoholic, yes, but not as much so as one might expect.

M: Wet initially, dried out by the end. Firm, chewy, and smackworthy.

O: Excellent Double IPA. Excellent beer. Highly recommended. Drinking, tasty, interesting, and regal. Will drink again.

OG: 1.090
IBU: 102
ABV: 10.46%

Photo of Jimmys
4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: light orange haze. vivid carbonation can be seen through the haze. creamsicle hued head starts big but moves to a much more reasonable rim sized version. beautiful lacing.

S: the hops almost seem to sit on top of the aroma starting you on a citrus tease that leads into a massive malt aroma. almost a lime-like scent for a moment.

T: a fully-malted sugary sweetness twangs between cotton candy. a full-bodied cactus that brings out both the earthyness of a highly hoped ale but also hints of citrus/grapefruit/pine that highlights the american hop varietal.

M: seriously full body. sticks to the palate and then is washed away with some subtle fizz.

D: great showcase of a tasteful malt body as well as american hops. kind of surprised of how drinkable this big bodied brew is considering the alcohol, but it is hardly noticeable.

Photo of BDTyre
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Good, solid copper colour with a porous, fluffy head. Rich, citrus hop scent. Sweet grapefruit, lemon, brown sugar and malts. Nice, good malt backbone in taste with a strong dose of hops. Ctirusy, fruity tastes, good hop bitterness. Pleasant bitter aftertaste long after the beer is swallowed. Alcohol is very well hidden in both the scent and taste.

Light oily feel, perhaps from the hops. Light, but noticeable carbonation. 10.46% ABV limits this somewhat, but still a great IPA.

Batch 14, June 2011.

Photo of Wtbrooks
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- good copper color.
S-very fruity. Think I'm picking up grapefruit and maybe peaches
T- very good. Slightly boozy, hops aren't crazy with this one with one. Bitter and lemon.
M-very nice. Slightly think as I was expecting
O- very good. I would recommend this beer.

Photo of mikul93
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pours a clear amber with a healthy 2 finger head.

S As soon as I popped open the bottle, Pineapple! Lots of pineapple, slight pine and some citrus.

T Sweet malt flavor immediately followed by hops. Quite boozy.

M Medium body lots of carbonation.

O Was more impressed with the nose than I was the taste. But I would definitely pick this up again. Solid beer.

Photo of DrewShal9
3.95/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: amber yet dark peachy color with a white head that fizzles slowly. Laces along the edge of the glass
S: smells like pineapple. Literally like a freshly cut pineapple. Some sweetness with a hint of alcohol.
T: pineapple, piney, alcohol, very sweet yet tasty
M: very little carbonation and slightly syrupy. Very drying at the finish as should be expected with an iipa
O: very tasty and boozy as I'm starting to get a buzz already lol. Def want to age one of these. Try one for yourself!

Photo of beer2day
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this many times on draft. Couldn't believe I've never reviewed it here. June 2011 edition reviewed here.

More red than gold pour. 1.5 finger white head. Slight lace and slight retention. Very light carbonation.

Sweet citrus leaps out of the glass and grabs you by the nose. Closer inspection reveals an estery hop aroma with citrus flowers and some honey. Decent alcohol feel to the nose, too.

Lots of resiny hops with heavy malt backbone. Very thick and oily. Light taste of honey and maybe even a mead-like quality. Strong alcohol presence. Very flowery - tulips? Strong hop and alcohol burn in the finish.

One of my personal favorites.

Photo of fields336
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle, poured into SN Snifter
Batch #14 June 2011

A: Dark honey/Amber color, with 2 fingers fluffy golden head, that is very bubbly, Stays around for a while, leaving some nice lacing and bubbles on the side of the glass. Alcohol legs visible which is expected for a 10.46% ABV monster

S: Big grapefruit and citrus notes on this one, filled the room when I opened the bottle. Getting a lot of fruits and honey as well. Caramel and bready malts are also present. Alcohol is present, along also with some grassy/piney hops as well

T: Honey sweet when it hits your tongue and warms your mouth up instantly, (if that makes any sense) the malts are really prominent, but balanced for the amount of hops here.Then the hops set in, with their citrusy and piney goodness, A bit syrupy, but as it warms, not as much.

M: Creamy and full bodied, this one is a sipper. Really drinkable for 10.5% though and extremely tasty. The finish is nice and dry for such a creamy beer.

O: Really nice, gives hopslam a run for its money for sure.

Photo of nicnut45
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Pours a dark ruby red. Half a fingers worth of head, settles to a fine wispy lacing.

S- Bitter grapefruit, pineapple, kiwi, elmers paste, maple syrup, and pine.

T- Piney peppermint hops followed by a fruity alcohol cocktail. The malts seem to be squished between the bitterness of the hops and the strong alcohol finish which is semi dry. Carbonation stings the toungue a bit and has a pleasing burn down the gullet. The malts balance the hops well and this is somewhat sweet.

M.F. Nice and chewey, carbonation was perfect for style.

O- A fine brew. Wish I had more of this. My bottle was very fresh so hop flavors were ideal and the bitterness of this was not so overwhelming that it became unbalanced.

Photo of spicelab
3.7/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bomber with massive thanks to mulder1010.

Brilliant clear amber, with a modest relatively dense off-white head. Falls gradually leaving a minor raised ring. Swirling generates decent lace trails.

Massive pine branch and resin underpinned by hefty amounts of savoury malts. Also prominent are mandarin and pineapple, with occasional high candied notes of lemon sherbet, bubble-gum and pineapple lollies. Seems a little too big for its boots courtesy of an overt booze presence.

Something of a pine battering ram. Pine needles, pine branches, pine roots, pine oil. Citrusy and tropical hop character tries to compete, but mostly in vain. Some strong herbs are evident, like bay leaves and sage.

Palpably heavy in the mouth immediately the liquid leaves the glass. In fact I can't think of a beer I've had that feels this heavy - even around 15%. Carbonation is suitably mild at least, and the ABV makes the bitterness quite agreeable.

Perilously close to a booze-bomb. There's no obvious reason why this needs its 10.3%, given the hop profile is not particularly complex or challenging. Would be a very nice beer at 8-9%.

Photo of 2xHops
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It had a copper color to the beer and unsurprisingly not as much head as I thought there would be.

The beer was first served to me somewhat chilled, so initially it had hints of grapefruit to the flavors along with the hops. However, you also could taste the alcohol seeping through because it had 10% ABV. As the beer start to warm up, the hops really come alive. As I finished off the glass, I could smell and taste the alcohol coming through a bit more strongly.

The hops really does linger in your mouth for a while especially when the beer warms up to room temperature.

This is a good beer for anybody that wants a serious beer with a serious punch. I would drink it again with a dinner or perhaps at a beer tasting party.

Photo of silentjay
3.65/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a copper with a nice mahogany hue. a decent sized eggshell colored head recedes quickly and laces pretty well.

lots of tropical fruits mixed with pine and bitter citrus, as well as plenty of leafy hops that bring some mint and tobacco into play on top of some sugary sweet malts. plenty of alcohol (rum?) on the nose as well.

alcohol jumps out first with some sticky sugary sweetness behind the onslaught of hops. tropical fruits, leafy hops, and bitter citrus are all accounted for, but the pine seems to have disappeared, unfortunately.

hot and syrupy with plenty of resin and sticky sweetness.

not my style of DIPA. a bit too boozy and sweet for my liking. its very well brewed for what it is, just not what I look favor. will definitely drink again, but I wouldn't go out of my way to acquire it.

Photo of SFC21
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into Sam Adams pint glass

A - Amber colored body with an inch of creamy head. Great lacing.

S - Lots of sweet malts, some floral hops, heavy booze presence.

T - Starts with heavy malts upfront, almost barleywine-esque, followed by a bitter, but not too bitter, earthy hops finish. The alcohol makes itself known.

M - Nice and creamy.

O - Very complex beer. It took me a few sips to warm up to this one but I came to appreciate it. I don't love it but I can definitely see why it gets very high marks.

Photo of SawDog505
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into 13oz tulip. A very clear copper, with a sticky white two inch head. Smell is very bold, grapefruit, breadeness, some orange, and some booze. Smell is all that, but even more intense. It lingers for some time. Big mouthfeel, enough carbonation given the Abv. This is the real deal. A large Imperial IPA that you can't forget.

Photo of ms11781
2.99/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottled on 3/21/2011. Reviewed on 04/04/2011. 22oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a clear ruby red color with a finger of white foam. Head dissipates quickly and leaves a soap-like lacing around the glass.

Great hop aroma from the nose. Huge citrus and pine aromas are present along with some tropical fruit. There is also a sweet characteristic to the nose. Caramel malt and some ripe fruit seem to be here as well.

The taste is considerably different from the nose due to a huge presence of alcohol. The big citrusy and piny hops are here, but not as assertive as they were in the nose. Sweet caramel malt is here as well but the alcohol that is present completely changes the profile. Slight bitter finish that lingers a bit but the alcohol is prevalent towards the back end.

Slick, oily and sticky. Bitterness isn't all that strong but it sticks a bit. Normally these work well with a DIPA but they don't work with the alcohol in this one.

Overall, this one has a great nose. It's very enticing but the rest of the beer doesn't live up to the aroma. The alcohol is overwhelming at some points and provides a harsh finish at others.

Photo of DavidST
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a snifter, this is Batch no. 14, June 11.

I had this on tap before and I got pretty toasty not realizing its high ABV which was pretty well hidden. I'm looking forward to the bottle and hoping its just as good.

Pours a slightly hazy dark amber color or a copperish color, it has a nice off white head which looks pretty nice and seems to have decent retention for the ABV. The smell is full of strong citrus hops, some grapefruit followed by lots of caramel malts. Feel is medium to thick and creamy, I'm getting a nice coating of hops as I swirl it around, excellent feel. The taste is pretty balanced, you get a load of mouth coating hops, followed by a wave of sweet malts followed by a long lingering grapefruit hops bitterness. To me the alcohol is very well hidden, there is a reason why I didn't realize the AVB of the pints of this on tap I was having.

With this one and hop stoopid a couple of nights ago, I'm warming back up to the Imperial IPA style, normally I find them too sweet but this one is great even with the sweetness, this might be perhaps my favorite Imperial IPA (assuming that Runiation is a double IPA and slightly different). Great stuff.

Photo of gdw2
4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch #14 from June 2011

A - Lighter amber color with a great initial thick off white head. Head died down slightly after a little bit. Lot's of lacing the whole way down the glass.

S - Strong citrus/hop smell with strong notes of pineapple and grapefruit.

T - Pretty strong hop bomb in your mouth at 102 IBU. Strong citrus taste from the hops with a little bit of malt flavor at the end. Alcohol taste is there, but well masked by the hop flavor.

M - Thicker but refreshing. I almost would like a little bit more carbonation, but maybe that is just personal preference. I have had beers in the same style with a little bit better mouthfeel, but this one is definitely far from bad!

Photo of BeardedRiker
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My brother had me try this not too long ago and I liked it. I don't buy enough Avery so the next time I saw this I decided to pick it up. And it's an imperial IPA. I know I'll like it!

The Maharaja looks lovely when poured out. The head takes awhile to form it's creamy-foamy texture and off-white, a bit tannish color. There's some good head retention and a lot of lacing left behind. And I mean a lot of lacing. By a lot of lacing I mean after drinking half of it there is lacing all the way down. I don't remember the last beer I've had that did this. The beer is an orange copper color. Not too much bubbles rising to the top.

How does the Maharaja smell? Like heaven, if heaven was really fruity and hoppy. Honestly, when I poured this out I thought I was smelling pineapple juice and I wasn't even trying to smell it. So yes, extremely fruity. Pineapple and mango smells are very strong but that's not all. Floral hops are there too that add the spicy yet caramel sweetness pine aromas. After letting it warm up a bit I'm getting some grassy malts. The only reason I don't give it a 5/5 for smell is because I don't know what a perfect smell is. :P

Flavors are much like the smell. The tropical fruit flavors jump out adding acidity and sweetness, then comes the pine spice and caramel sweetness, and finally hop bitterness. I'd say it's more sweet than bitter, more fruity than hoppy, but it's a good balance. If you let it warm up a bit the malts come out more and the spiciness from the hops becomes more present. The malts bring the sweetness and help smooth it all out. It's definitely bitter but it's also sweet, fruity, acidy (word? whatever...), spicy, and smooth. Big flavors but good balance. Yum, yum, yum!

I really enjoy the sort of buttery feel this beer has. It may be buttery but because of its strong sweetness it's also sticky. It's medium-bodied and has a lower carbonation but I don't think it detracts from the beer at all. It's not too little though. I really like how this one feels.

This is one of the better imperial IPAs I've had. I generally don't like the fruitier beers and even though this one is very fruity I liked it. It looks beautiful and taste great. Fruity, hoppy, spicy, sweet, and smooth. A great imperial IPA. Is this the "Great King" of imperial IPAs? It just might be.

Photo of rootbeerman
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: pours dark copper, finger of head that was off white.
S: sweet malt caramel with mainly grapefruit hop.
T: again sweet caramel malt upfront, hop hits on the back end with mainly grapefruit with a little bit of pine. There also is a general fruit hidden in with the hops.
M: thick a little bit sticky and coating but its not a complaint. Carbonation is a touch low.
O: I've had this many both on tap in bottle and now growler, this is in my top ten dipa/ipa's

Photo of AmericanGothic
4.7/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into 2 Sam Adams pints.

A: Pours a transparent, dark orange with one finger of off-white head. Very good retention and lace.

S: Grapefruit and sweet malt, pretty intense.

T: Wow. Sweet grapefruit, well balanced, turns more into the sweet direction in the middle and then ends with bitter rose on the finish. Fantastic.

M: Light, very smooth, with a bit of oil.

O: A great beer, really loved it. Will be looking for this one wherever it can be found.

Photo of biglobo8971
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

have had this beer many times, first time in growler.
has a great amber orange color, lacing is present the whole glass.
smells like citrus and spice, most notably is lemon.
taste is a little bit to malty sweet for me, its got a great after bite of hops bitterness, just the middle is a tad bit to careamel sweet for my likings.
easy to drink, if your into sweet hops.
Overall, I would drink this beer again, but I would not seek out via trade.

Photo of TheNapkin
4.65/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A strong contender for the best Imperial IPA available. The best thing about this beer is that as it warms up the hop bouquet really becomes more and more complex: wild, grassy, dare I say wild oniony/garlicky? Weird, I know, but somehow it works. Pineapple and syrup mix with honeyed grapefruit. A must have for any hophead.

Photo of movingtrain
4.74/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle reads: 102 IBUs, and 10.54% ABV. From the "Dictator Series."

Pours a copper-reddish color, very little head, and not much carbonation. The head is kind of a soapy film clinging to the sides of the glass.

The aroma is buttery, rich, and massively hoppy. Grapefruit, dense pine, rich caramel, rosemary, and peppercorn fill the nose. The smell is very heavy, and quite rich.

The flavor here, too, is remarkable. Very balanced and creamy. Deep grapefruit/citrus notes, caramel, rye bread, and some light oats/malt backing it up. The flavor is outstanding, and very, very big.

Another main proponent that stands out here is the alcohol. There is a major alcohol burn going down, one that reaches even up through the nose. This isn't a negative by any means...it is just powerful and pungent.

Overall, this is an excellent beer. It does what it set out to do: conquer the senses. Well done.

Photo of beerandcycling88
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a snifter. The date on the bottle is June 2011.

A Pours a deep caramel color with a thick off white head that leaves a lot of lacing. A pretty nice looking beer.

S The smell is very fruity and sweet. There is a distinct smell of pineapple, and other tropical fruits. Smells quite nice.

T The taste is obviously hop forward but not to the point that its overpowering the malts. It starts with a bit of bitterness, then there are notes of tropical fruit like pineapple. The finish is caramel malts. I like the balance of this one.

M Thick body, but not syrupy with just a hint of alcoholic burn. Quite pleasant feeling.

Overall this might be my favorite DIPA. It nicely balanced with a good nose and mouthfeel, and I don't feel like I'm pouring hop oil down my mouth when I drink it. A great beer I would not hesitate to drink again.

Photo of greenmonstah
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 13, bottled March 2011 and reviewed in July

A - Caramel in color with a thin off white head. Weak retention.

S - Tropical fruit bonanza - grapefruit and pineapple, and some grassy notes.

T - Similar to nose. Very fruit forward, with a sweet (mango or maybe papaya) character joined by grapefruit and some pineapple. This is all followed by a grassy bitterness and a malt backbone which smoothes and rounds out the beer. No booze flavor.

M - A bit sticky sweet. Round with some carbonation sharpness. A bit cloying, slightly dry finish. Medium body.

O - Overall a delicious, complex brew. Plenty of flavors working together perfectly, but somewhat sticky in the feel. Amazing job of hiding the alcohol.

Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 4,938 ratings.